Reports that the cost of sixty capsules of Minocin, the original brand of minocycline, has risen to $3000 in the United States has been cause for serious concern for rheumatic patients who depend on this medication as a core therapy. Minocin is a second generation tetracycline that was synthesized in 1967 by Lederle Laboratories, was FDA approved in 1971, and became available in 1972. Yet, since the Lederle patent lapsed, it has been sold on to various pharmaceutical companies that have consistently raised its price beyond the reach of the average consumer or willingness of insurance carriers to cover. Most recently, Valeant bought out Precision, the parent company of Onset Dermatologics that had been distributing Minocin, marketing it as an acne treatment, and raised the price by a startling three hundred percent.
In a bold move, the American Medical Association (AMA) has launched an advocacy campaign to “…drive solutions and help make prescription drugs more affordable.”
Among the solutions the AMA recommends is to seek to ban direct-to-consumer advertising that drives up pharmaceutical marketing costs and creates demand for newer, more expensive drugs. The United States and New Zealand are the only two countries in the world that permit direct-to-consumer advertising.
To read the full AMA article, click here: